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On This Day



On This Day… A Famous Pirate Was Captured

Written by: George Chittenden : 09 Jun 2019

It was on this day, 20th Oct, back in 1720 when notorious pirate of the Caribbean Jack Rackham, AKA Calico Jack, was captured by the Royal Navy. His real name was John Rackham; however, Jack was a popular nickname for John. He was nicknamed Calico Jack, as he often wore calico clothing.

Jack was around at the end of the "Golden Age of Piracy", which lasted from 1650 to 1730. Jack Rackham was active as a pirate from around 1718–1720. He operated in the Bahamas and in Cuba and was famous for having two female crew members: Mary Read, and his lover, Anne Bonny. He also contributed to the legacy of piracy as his first mate Karl Starling designed the Jolly Roger flag, a skull with crossed swords.

Jack Rackham accepted a pardon in 1719 and moved to New Providence, however in 1720 he returned to piracy and stole a British sloop. The Bahamas' Governor Woodes Rogers issued a proclamation declaring Rackham and his crew pirates, which made him a wanted man. Rackham was captured by Royal Navy pirate hunter Jonathan Barneton this very day whilst his ship was anchored in Bry Harbour Bay, Jamaica. He was hanged on November 18th in Port Royal, Jamaica.

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